May 10, 2013 at 1:39 PM
We’re running a poll in today’s sports section asking readers which in-state NBA product is the most fun to watch?
You have two choices: Nate Robinson, who starred at Washington, or former Washington State standout Klay Thompson.
Ken Bone, who coached both players, said Thursday he’s enjoying watching both of them succeed during the playoffs. Bone arrived at Washington in 2002 shortly before Robinson walked off the football field and onto a basketball court where he became a star. They left UW in 2005.
When Bone took the WSU job the first thing he did was watch every game from the previous season of Thompson. Bone concluded the Cougars were underutilizing the 6-foot-7 freshman.
“I’m not knocking the system at all – a great system under coach Tony Bennett – but Klay was really just a catch-and-shoot guy,” Bone said. “We needed more. We needed him to score a variety of ways.
“I asked the video coordinator to pull up some James Harden stuff because Klay’s got to learn how to drive it and be aggressive like Harden,” Bone said. “So we tried to mix the ability of him being able to shoot it and being able to drive and at times post up. And he really became a great scorer for us obviously.
“And he’s doing that now.”
Thompson started 33 games as a freshman and had just 31 free-throw attempts. He made 28 and averaged 12.5 points. Bone replaced WSU’s half-court oriented offense with an up-tempo scheme built around its mercurial shooting guard.
As a sophomore, Thompson converted 133 of 166 attempts at the line while averaging 19.6 points.
As a junior, he converted 155 of 185 attempts at the line while averaging 21.6 points.
It’s interesting to note, Washington junior C.J. Wilcox is following a similar path. He’s brilliant jump shooter who rarely got to the line early in his career. However, he’s become more of a versatile scorer recently.
As a redshirt freshman Wilcox was 25 of 31 at the line and averaged 8.1 points. As a sophomore he was 78 of 93 and averaged 14.2 points. And last season he 93 of 114 free throw attempts while averaging 16.8 points.
It’s not entirely a fair comparison because WSU built its offense around Thompson, who took 551 shots his final season. Wilcox has the green light, but he was more judicious and attempted 480 shots last season.
Still maybe Wilcox should ask Thompson if he can borrow those videos of Harden. Or better yet, maybe he should tune into the the NBA playoffs and watch Thompson, who is quickly becoming a star.
May 10, 2013 at 5:29 AM
It’s been a long time coming, but Jahmel Taylor is finally making his official visit at Washington.
He arrived this week and his trip to Seattle will serve two purposes. He’ll get a chance to see the university and the city for the first time and he’s also going to compete in this weekend’s West Coast All-Star Classic alongside 2013 UW recruit Darin Johnson.
Taylor, a 5-11 and 160-pound point guard from Los Angeles, verbally committed to the Huskies in January. He signed scholarship papers April 17.
“I’m really looking forward to meeting up with the players and seeing what goes on at school,” Taylor said. “I just want to see the community. From my research, it’s a great community. People are really into the Husky Nation. And I’m really excited about meeting the players. They seem like great guys. I’m looking forward to meeting them in person and actually getting to know them better.
“I want to meet everybody, but especially the leader of the team like C.J. Wilcox. I really look forward to meeting him to see how he feels and also what his goals are for next year and things like that. Just getting to know him better.”
Taylor and Johnson are members of UW’s 2013 class that includes McDonald’s All-American Nigel Williams-Goss and junior-college transfer Mike Anderson.
AROUND THE PAC-12:
— Had a chance to catchup with Washington State coach Ken Bone who helped with today’s story on former UW star Nate Robinson and former WSU standout Klay Thompson.
— Seven Pac-12 players will compete at the NBA Combine in Chicago on May 16-17. Here’s a complete list of all 61 players courtesy of Draft Express. The Pac-12 players include: Allen Crabbe (Cal), DeWayne Dedmon (USC), Carrick Felix (Arizona State), Solomon Hill (Arizona), Grant Jerrett (Arizona), Shabazz Muhammad (UCLA) and Andre Roberson (Colorado). So far it appears as if the underclassmen in the conference who decided to enter the draft (Crabbe, Dedmon, Jerrett, Muhammad and Roberson) have made a good choice.
— Felix could turn heads at the combine. The 6-6 guard had a strong senior season at ASU. He’s added seven pounds and works out daily in preparation for the draft workouts.
— The University of Washington is ranked the sixth best university in the world in a study conducted by the Middle East Technical University (Ankara, Turkey) Graduate School of Informatics.
May 9, 2013 at 7:35 AM
The Pac-12 is making its mark in the NBA playoffs.
On Monday, former Washington star Nate Robinson led the Chicago Bulls to a surprising Game 1 upset against the defending champion Miami Heat.
And Wednesday night, former Washington State star Klay Thompson played the best game of his life. He scored 34 points and collected 14 rebounds – both career highs – for the Golden State Warrior during a historic 100-91 victory over the San Antonio Spurs that tied their second-round series at one game apiece and snapped a 30-game losing streak in the Alamo City.
He also played outstanding defense against Spurs guards Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili.
It was a virtuoso performance from Thompson, who scored 29 points in the first half, converted 8 of 9 three-pointers and shot 13 of 26 from the field. The eight three-pointers were a franchise playoff record. Here’s video highlights of his big first half.
“Klay was unbelievable,” said Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.
Thompson’s display Wednesday rekindled memories of his dazzling 43-point performance in the 2011 Pac-10 Tournament against Washington.
AROUND THE PAC-12:
— According to a USA Today report, Washington’s athletic department made more money than it spent in 2012. The USA Today database cites the Huskies generated $83 million in revenue while expenses were calculated at $74M.
— When news broke that Angelo Chol was leaving Arizona after two years, it was rumored he was transferring to San Diego State. The Arizona Daily Star confirmed those rumors. According to Chol’s high school coach Ollie Goulston, the 6-8 power forward received interest from 48 schools. However, he made just one visit and took a look at SDSU. That’s all it took for him to make his decision and return home where he played in high school. He’ll sit out next season and have two years remaining.
— Arizona State’s Evan Gordon is also leaving the Pac-12. The junior guard, who started 25 games last season in his first year with the Sun Devils, wants to transfer to a team closer to his hometown Indianapolis. He plans to graduate this summer, which would make him eligible to play next season. Gordon began his college career at Liberty.
— Cal has received an oral commitment from 2013 prospect Roger Moute a Bidias, a 6-7 forward from Cameroon. He’s the younger brother of former UCLA star Luc Richard Mbah a Moute.
— Colorado landed the first major 2014 commit in the Pac-12. The Buffaloes received a verbal commitment from Dominique Collier, a 6-1 guard from Denver who is considered a four-star prospect by the major recruiting sites.
— New USC coach Andy Enfield is putting in 16-hour days and lives in a hotel next to the Galen Center. The man is committed to reviving a dormant Trojans men’s basketball team.
— Former UCLA recruit Allerick Freeman is going to Baylor.
— In his preseason top 40 list, Dick Vitale lists Arizona fourth, Arizona State 21, UCLA 27, Stanford 30, Colorado 38 and Oregon 40th.
— DirecTV is surging in subscriber growth without the Pac-12 Networks.
May 7, 2013 at 4:55 PM
Several recruiting sites and media outlets are reporting UNLV junior forward Mike Moser will transfer to Oregon. He was considering Washington and Gonzaga.
It’s a homecoming for the 6-8, 210-pound Portland native who won a state title at Grant High. A four-star recruit, he committed to Arizona before signing with UCLA. After one season with the Bruins (2009-10), he transferred to UNLV.
Moser became a star his first year with the Runnin’ Rebels. He averaged 14 points and 10.5 rebounds during the 2011-12 season and received honorable mention All-American honors. Moser considered entering the NBA draft, but chose to return to school.
However, his junior year wasn’t very productive.
He switched positions from power forward to small forward due to the addition of star prospect Anthony Bennett, who became an All-American freshman. Moser suffered an elbow injury that forced him to miss seven games and he averaged 7.1 points and 6.1 rebounds.
Moser made it clear that he wasn’t going to return to UNLV and is expected to graduate, which makes him immediately eligible to play next season.
Reportedly Washington was an early favorite to secure the coveted big man.
Landing Moser would been a significant acquisition for the Huskies who missed on touted prospect Aaron Gordon. Washington still has a scholarship remaining, but it appears as if the Huskies will begin the season with 12 scholarship players.
Moser would have been the second or third option on a UW team that will feature shooting guard C.J. Wilcox.
Washington’s loss is Oregon’s gain. Since the arrival of coach Dana Altman, the Ducks have had success with senior transfers including Arsalan Kazemi (Rice), Olu Ashaolu (Louisiana Tech) and Devoe Joseph (Minnesota).
Pac-12 Tournament champion Oregon, which finished 28-9 and advanced to the NCAA tournament Sweet 16, returns star point guard Dominic Artis and Damyean Dotson in the backcourt. Moser helps offset the loss of front court players E.J. Singler, Tony Woods, Carlos Emory and Kazemi.
The Ducks are also in pursuit of Tarik Black, a 6-9 junior power forward who is expected to transfer from Memphis.
May 7, 2013 at 12:43 PM
Washington hired assistant T.J. Otzelberger, who has spent the past eight years at Iowa State.
The 35-year-old Otzelberger has been an associate head coach for the Cyclones since 2010.
“T.J. has earned a reputation as a tenacious recruiter and his depth of experience will benefit our program immediately,” coach Lorenzo Romar said in a release from Washington. “We are excited to welcome him to the Husky family.”
Otzelberger wants to someday become a head coach and told the Associated Press he took the UW job because Romar has a track record helping assistants become head coaches, including Randy Bennett (Saint Mary’s) and Cameron Dollar (Seattle University).
“I just felt like this was the next step in my progression,” Otzelberger said told the AP.
“As a coach, there are few chances you get to have the opportunity to work for someone whom you look up to as a coach, a mentor, and a man of great character,” Otzelberger said in a statement from UW. “I feel like coach Romar embodies all of those qualities, and I’m excited to be a part of the Husky program and compete on the national level each year.”
It appears as if Otzelberger will replace Lamont Smith, who spent one year at Washington before leaving for New Mexico. The rest of the Husky staff includes assistants Jim Shaw and Brad Jackson and Paul Fortier, who is the director of player of personnel.
AROUND THE PAC-12:
— In other coaching news, Arizona hired former Wildcats star Damon Stoudamire as an assistant. The Portland native was an All-American and co-Pac-10 Player of the Year pick in 1995. He played 13 years in the NBA and was an assistant for the Memphis Tigers the past two seasons.
May 6, 2013 at 10:08 PM
Nate Robinson led the Chicago Bulls to a 93-86 victory over the Miami Heat in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
It was a gutsy performance from the former Washington star who finished with a game-high 27 points and nine assists despite being bloodied and bruised.
In the second quarter, the 5-8, 180-pound guard got steamrolled by 6-8 and 250 pound LeBron James while attempting to retrieve a loose ball. Robinson cut his lip after the collision and needed 10 stitches.
He returned in the second half and scored 24 points.
“I’ve played on some tough teams, but this one is something special,” Robinson told the Chicago Tribune. “It feels like we’ve been playing together for 10 years. I told Coach, we just love to play for each other.”
May 3, 2013 at 10:08 AM
Jon Rothstein at CBS New York makes an astute point about the college basketball offseason when he likens it to NBA free agency. In recent years, we’ve seen an uptick in seniors graduate from their old schools, receive immediate waivers to play next season and shop for a new home.
Oregon has sustained the program the past two years with that type of player. And now Washington is hoping to cash in as well with Mike Moser, a coveted 6-8 senior forward who is expected to graduate from UNLV.
Rothstein believes Moser could make a decision Friday or over the weekend between the Huskies, Ducks and Gonzaga.
Moser, a Portland native, told Adam Zagoria “It’s definitely a tough decision.”
He added: “You can’t ignore Gonzaga’s track record of making it to NCAA Tournament and winning conference tournament titles. It’s a great program that gains a lot of national exposure.
“Washington has added some impressive pieces and will be better next year. They’ve sent a lot of players to the NBA. And Oregon has come a long way in the past three years, not to mention the fact that’s where I’m from. But all in all, these three schools have three amazing elite coaches. I don’t think anyone can argue that.”
AROUND THE PAC-12:
— The Pac-12 hired Ice Miller LLP to conduct its independent review of the officiating scandal during the conference’s men’s basketball tournament in Las Vegas last month. Ice Miller LLP has a branch specializing in NCAA-related matters. One of its attorneys who handles sports, Stuart Brown will head the review.
— We’re starting to get a consensus on who the national media feels will be the Pac-12′s featured players heading into the 2013-14 season. CBSsports.com didn’t include Pac-12 player on its early preseason all-America teams. However, UCLA’s Jordan Adams and Kyle Anderson, Arizona State’s Jahii Carson and Arizona’s Aaron Gordon were added to a 20-man players to watch list.
May 1, 2013 at 6:44 PM
Washington fans have read this story many times.
Highly touted high-school big man likes the Huskies, but they finish second in the recruiting race even though many believe he’s a perfect fit at UW. The player speaks fondly about coach Lorenzo Romar, but still goes to another school.
After a year or two, the player transfers and UW fans wonder what could have been. (see Drew Gordon, Joshua Smith, Norvel Pelle and Mike Moser.)
Now it’s happening with Angelo Chol.
According to Mark Zeigler at the San Diego Union-Tribune, the Arizona sophomore forward is leaving Arizona and considering transferring to San Diego State. He starred at San Diego’s Hoover High where he became a four-star prospect. His final college choices included Washington and SDSU.
Chol never found consistent playing time or a spot in the rotation at Arizona.
As a freshman, he averaged 12.1 minutes, 2.8 points, 2.3 rebounds, 0.8 blocks and shot 56.2 percent from the field in 35 games.
Chol’s production dropped in every category last season. He averaged 8.5 minutes, 1.9 points, 2.0 rebounds, 0.3 blocks and shot 44.7 percent in 28 games. He didn’t play in two of Arizona’s three NCAA tournament contests.
The Wildcats added star high-school prospect Aaron Gordon and lost forward Grant Jerrett, who declared for the draft. Still, it would have been difficult for Chol to find playing time next season because Arizona’s front line includes center Kaleb Tarczewski and forwards Brandon Ashley.
AROUND THE PAC-12:
— Moser reportedly took a visit to Gonzaga last weekend and is back in Las Vegas. The 6-8 junior forward has said he’ll transfer from UNLV and is considering Washington, Oregon and the Zags. Moser, who led Portland’s Grant High to a state championship, has ties to the Huskies and Ducks.
— Hadn’t written much about Junior Etou, a 6-7 forward in Arlington, Va. He had an offer from Washington and many considered him Plan B if the Huskies missed out on Moser. Well Etou announced Thursday afternoon he’s going to school at Rutgers. He also considered Cincinnati, Clemson and Xavier.
— ESPN.com released its final 2013 top 100 and one of the high-school prospects who signed with Washington made the list. Nigel Williams-Goss received five stars and ranks 19th.
— Washington’s 2013 recruiting class ranks 24th nationally, according to 247sports.com. Arizona is fourth, California 31, Colorado 41, Oregon 45, UCLA 46, Stanford 50, USC 66, Washington State 75, Arizona State 80, Utah 96 and Oregon State 101.
— Andre Roberson’s dad John, who played basketball professionally overseas, told the Denver Post the Colorado junior forward left school early because the NBA can better develop his game.
— It’s too early to think about all-America teams, but NBCsports.com put together a lists of teams. Arizona State’s Jahii Carson is a third-team selection. UCLA guards Jordan Adams and Kyle Anderson, Colorado’s Spencer Dinwiddie and Arizona’s Aaron Gordon are honorable mention picks.
— Fantastic story by the Grantland on former Washington star Quincy Pondexter.
— The NBA released its list of 77 early-entry candidates for the 2013 draft with 46 players from U.S. colleges, 31 international players and five players from the Pac-12 including: California’s Allen Crabbe, UCLA’s Shabazz Muhammad, Colorado’s Andre Roberson, USC’s DeWayne Dedmon and Jarrett.
The list does not include junior guard C.J. Wilcox, who decided to return to Washington for his fifth and final season.
Here’s a list of Pac-12 players who spurned the NBA: UCLA guard Kyle Anderson, Arizona State point guard Jahii Carson, Oregon State forward Devon Collier, Colorado guard Spencer Dinwiddie, Oregon State forward Eric Moreland and Stanford forward Dwight Powell.
April 29, 2013 at 10:43 AM
Here’s a look at the Pac-12 underclassmen who declared for the NBA draft and those who considered leaving, but chose to return to school.
GOING TO NBA
Allen Crabbe, California
Grant Jarrett, Arizona
Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA
Andre Roberson, Colorado
DeWayne Dedmon, USC
STAYING IN SCHOOL
Kyle Anderson, UCLA
Jahii Carson, Arizona State
Devon Collier, Oregon State
Spencer Dinwiddie, Colorado
Eric Moreland, Oregon State
Dwight Powell, Stanford
C.J. Wilcox, Washington
And here’s a look at players who are transferring out of the Pac-12.
Jeremy Adams, Colorado
Martin Breunig, Washington
Glen Dean, Utah
Aaron Dotson, Utah
Bryce Leavitt, Washington State
Willie Moore, Oregon
Kaileb Rodriguez, California
Justin Seymour, Utah
Tyler Sugiyama, USC
So far not there aren’t many big names leaving the conference. Still it’s interesting to note Utah is losing Dean and Dotson, two Seattle-area high school standouts who transferred to Utah two years ago.
AROUND THE PAC-12:
— Nice feature on Arizona incoming freshman Aaron Gordon.
— Fantastic weekend for a pair of former UW Huskies. Nate Robinson scored 34 points, including 23 in the fourth quarter, to lead Chicago to a thrilling 142-134 triple-overtime victory and a 3-1 series lead over Brooklyn. Meanwhile, Quincy Pondexter added 10 points off the bench to help Memphis to a 104-83 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers that evened their first-round playoff series at 2-2.
— In a first-person account on SI.com, former Stanford player Jason Collins disclosed that he is gay, making him the first active openly homosexual athlete in the four major American pro team sports. The 34-year-old NBA player wrote: “I didn’t set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport. But since I am, I’m happy to start the conversation. I wish I wasn’t the kid in the classroom raising his hand and saying, “I’m different.” If I had my way, someone else would have already done this. Nobody has, which is why I’m raising my hand.”
April 25, 2013 at 10:03 AM
Washington finished 18-16 during the 2012-13 season and made a second straight trip to the National Invitation Tournament, but there were some exciting moments during season.
Don’t take my word for it and check out the video of highlights (above) that was shown at the team banquet last week.
AROUND THE PAC-12:
— Allerik Freeman, a top 100 prospect, was granted his release from a national letter of intent he signed last November with UCLA. Without Freeman, UCLA’s recruiting class includes guards Zach LaVine and Bryce Alford and forward Noah Allen. Freeman played at Findlay Prep and was a teammate of Washington incoming freshman Nigel Williams-Goss.
Updated: 12:12 p.m.